Being a Tommie makes me proud. We work hard, and when we graduate we’re told we’re wanted in the “adult world” because we are professional, respectable and knowledgeable.
But as I walked back from my Christian Marriage class last week, I couldn’t get what my professor said out of my head: “Do it now.” No matter the context she said it in, I felt like it could be applied to one particular area in my life, being a respectable young woman. However, as I reflected on myself, I couldn’t help but notice the girls I passed on my way to my next class: the ones ruining it for the rest of us.
According to a study by the Center for Professional Excellence at York College, about one-third of human resource respondents and 36.5 percent of managers believe new employees have less professionalism than five years ago.
This could be due to appearances, the way we carry ourselves or the “anti-social media skills” we’ve acquired in the last few years.
I’m not sure, but one thing I do know is that girls on campus need to start respecting themselves, and they need to do it now.
A few ways to get on the road to recovery:
1. Ditch the talk about how amazing Thursday at Tiffs is going to be this week. Getting together with your girlfriends, wearing tight black skirts, showing your shoulders and disrespecting yourselves by getting belligerent to trudge your way to the shuttle is not OK. There are exactly 52 Thursdays in the year, and taking a break from drinking so much that it makes you act dumb would not hurt. Not only will this help your grades, but your body will thank you in the morning because you’ll be able to use your brain instead of letting it sit like oatmeal in your head.
2. Put yourself together every day. Walking to class with see-through leggings is not professional. Wear nice pants, a conservative shirt, comb your hair instead of bundling it on top of your head and put yourself together. Not only is it good practice for the “adult world,” but you’ll feel better, people will take you seriously and hopefully you’ll feel more productive. Try it. It just might work.
3. Line up an internship for the summer. “Nanny” doesn’t quite classify as a qualification for the “adult world” on your resume. Be proactive. Visit the Career Development Center, talk to your friends that do internships, sign up for “Take a Tommie to Lunch,” learn how to write a cover letter and apply. Not only will it help you get a leg up on other students who are still nannying in their senior summer, but you might even grow up a little.
I can’t say that women are the only ones not respecting themselves on this campus or that there are a lot of students like this. However, I can say this: If we don’t start respecting ourselves in college, how is anyone supposed to respect us in the real world? Stay in on a Thursday night, put yourself together, get that internship but most importantly… respect yourself. Don’t wait to be a responsible young adult. Do it now.
Hannah Anderson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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